Infrastructural capital refers to any physical
means of productionor means of protectionbeyond that which can be gathered or found directly in nature, i.e. beyond natural capitaland that which is not considered as " fluid capital". It may include tools, clothing, shelter, irrigation systems, dams, roads, boats, ports, factories or any physical improvements made to nature. This term can overlap with the notion of internal improvements and public works.
macro-economicsthe term " infrastructure" usually refers to the added-value of a nation-state relative to the raw natural capitalof its ecoregions, e.g. dams, roads, ports, canals, sewers, border posts, etc. - although it can also be used to describe firm-specific infrastructuresuch as factories, private roads, capital equipment, and other such assets.
The more generic term
physical capitalis sometimes used to refer to any combination of either infrastructural capital and natural capital-- recognizing that often an infrastructural improvement, e.g. a dam or road, becomes impossible to differentiate from the natural ecology within which it is embedded. Although it is confusing to consider personal propertycarried on the individual human body part of an "infrastructure", it is also contrary to refer to joint products of nature and man as being "manufactured" or "built" rather than as being "grown" or "developed", e.g. vines or other plants which grow on a manmade trellis. As both infrastructural and natural capital serve as means of productionand means of protectionfrom the elements, macro-economists rarely differentiate the two in their analysis.
However, from a public policy point of view, infrastructural capital is prone to more obvious and significant breakdowns and is usually a cost center.
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